Bullitt Advanced Math and Science (BAMS) student Reece Tomlinson became one of approximately 16,000 National Merit Semifinalist by doing well enough on the PSAT in his junior year to have met the statewide requirements.
However, even he was caught off guard by the good news.
“I was surprised to learn that I was a National Merit Semifinalist because I thought that I did not do well enough to be considered,” said the 17 year-old son of Michelle and Edward Tomlinson.
He had prepared his parents in case he was not notified of semifinalist status.
“I had talked to them before about how I didn’t think I would get it only to surprise them later,” Reece noted. “The first time I told anyone the news it was to my family and they were excited for me.”
As was his former BAMS instructors Stephanie Lewis and Robert “Chip” Davidson who posted the following on social media: Brag Alert: Now that we are able to declare it, I wanted to take a moment to congratulate one of our students from Cohort 7, Reece Tomlinson, for being selected as a National Merit Semifinalist. He is the third BAMS student to receive this honor and we are proud of his achievement and for representing BAMS and BCPS with excellence. We wish him all the best as he moves forward in the process. Congratulations, Reece, you’ve earned it and you’ve made us proud – Celebrating Success.
Reece attended Pleasant Grove Elementary School and Eastside Middle School before choosing to enroll in BAMS.
“I had multiple friends going into the program and I was also intrigued at the possibility of being able to enter a program specializing on getting students into college with transferrable credits,” he said.
Reece called the overall experience amazing with teachers he could work with to ensure he could learn as much as possible.
“In addition to this, our partnerships with Bernheim Arboretum and Research Forest, GE, and the Kentucky Science Center were really able to enhance what I learned and give what I learned a real-world application,” he explained.
Considering he was not expecting to be a National Merit Semifinalist, Reece said he is happy with where he is but still hoping his luck can continue and potentially go further in this competition.
Reece is in his second year of classes at Jefferson Community and Technical College and will graduate with fellow Bullitt East High School seniors in 2020.
He intends on going to medical school where he hopes to discover a specific field he can pursue.
For fellow classmates, Reece offers the following advice:
“Do not procrastinate. It is much easier said than done, I know that from experience. When you don’t procrastinate it allows you to not only complete your studies in a reasonable amount of time but it also allows you to have a healthy social life and to pursue any extracurriculars you wish,” he said.
Outside of school, Reece enjoys spending time with friends and family.
“I think it is important to be able to balance schoolwork and socialization,” he said. “I also play basketball and video games in my free time.”